So beautiful! So amazing! So real and so powerful! The wonder of the incarnation captured in an image… ‘He’s on His way’. The God who is about to arrive, who was and is and is to come… Jesus, Emmanuel, God with us, one of us: fragile, vulnerable, dependent – human. This is how He chose to come, just as we all come in this way, sharing our experience from cradle to grave, identifying with every stage, every need. And He went way beyond what many of us have to suffer, embracing the raw poverty of an emergency birth in an animal shelter – and soon afterwards, refugee status. He truly became ‘all things to all men so that by all possible means He might save some’ (1 Corinthians 9v22).
God chose weakness – the Creator put Himself at the mercy of His creatures – He came down to our level – no… even lower than that: ‘He made Himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man He humbled Himself (even more!) and became obedient to death – even (a cursed) death on a cross..’ Philippians 2v7-8). What a risk! What faith, you might say… ‘The weakness of God is stronger than the strength of men’ (1 Corinthians 1v25). The weakness of God speaks volumes, undercuts our pride, negates competition, shocks our sensibilities, touches our hearts; what sacrifice, what love to choose this path.
Let the hidden story shine out in the car parks and town centres, let the secret things come to the light. Let the world see and hear the story of our God who stepped down out of heaven to be born as a baby and realise its truth and power: THIS IS YOUR SAVIOUR! Let the revelation come this Christmas that this is more than an old myth that is played out by children dressed as kings and shepherds: heaven came to earth and a story began that is still running – the angels are closer than we think and the Saviour is steadily bringing in His Kingdom!
Yes, God does have a weakness that is His undoing – the cause of His longing and compulsion to burst out of heaven and join the human race. He just couldn’t resist its pull, despite the fact He would have to live in obscurity, face down satan on his own territory, appear, in the end, to lose the fight… His soft spot was too much, too big, too irresistible, even though it would mean heartache, betrayal, torture. God’s weakness is the Father’s love for every wayward child, His desire for reconciliation with humankind – His love for us.